Joshua labels himself the 'comeback king' ahead of Usyk rematch
Anthony Joshua labelled himself "the comeback king" as he faced up to Oleksandr Usyk ahead of their eagerly anticipated August rematch in Saudi Arabia.
While Joshua said he was confident of bouncing back from last September's unanimous decision reverse, Ukrainian Usyk pledged to give his home country some cheer through his boxing after returning to aid against the Russian invasion earlier this year.
Joshua will be bidding to reclaim the unified WBO, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles on August 20, after falling to just the second defeat of his professional career against Usyk in London last year.
As the fighters looked ahead to their clash in Jeddah, Joshua said he was grateful for the opportunity to right the wrongs of his previous performance at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
"The great thing is I've got a second chance. What got me into boxing in the first place... when I was a youngster I got in a little bit of trouble every now and again, and I was blessed with a second chance and I found boxing," Joshua said.
"I took it with both hands. So if you know me and a lot of my story, you know I'm the comeback king. You can put me down, but it's difficult to keep me down.
"In the fight in September, I was wrong and he [Usyk] was right. Definitely the hunger is still there. Blips happen, things happen in life, but resilience, mental toughness and consistency will always prevail."
The pair's second bout was delayed by Usyk returning to Kyiv in March to help defend Ukraine against Russian forces.
The 35-year-old Usyk, who is unbeaten in 19 professional fights, hopes he can offer some happiness to his countrymen when he returns to the ring.
"As we all know we are not in the best condition at the moment back at home, but we are doing what we have to do," Usyk said.
"We are doing our job. Together with my team we are working hard to achieve our goals. I never made some very loud and bright speeches.
"All I did was I just worked hard in my training camp and in my gym. That's what I'm going to do until the date of the fight, and then I will enter the ring and will make you happy with my boxing."